Literature & Languages

Literature & Languages

The English major provides students with much more than exposure to good literature. The study of literature deepens students’ understanding of the questions at the center of human experience. Students extend their range of experience and cultural understanding by examining stories that represent a variety of points of view and historical perspectives, learning, in the process, how to tell compelling stories of their own.


At the same time, English majors develop a variety of marketable skills with applications in a wide range of fields: skills in close reading, analysis, argument, critical thinking, research, and strong storytelling skills both orally and in writing.

We offer different tracks of study that allow each student to tailor a curriculum to individual interests–focus on LiteratureWritingMedia & Performance Studies, or pursue a secondary teaching licensure with our English Education track. Marymount’s Washington-area location provides students with access to rich cultural and research institutions that reinforce and broaden the classroom experience. Interested in digital storytelling and writing in the Internet age? Check out our sister program, Digital Writing & Narrative Design.

Literature and Languages offers courses in writing, literature, linguistics, and foreign languages. These courses support a variety of undergraduate degree and certificate options, a master’s degree program, and the University’s Liberal Arts Core requirements. Students can take additional courses through the Washington-area consortium of universities.

What can you do with a degree in English?

An English major provides students with a versatile preparation for the workplace and advanced study. Their widely applicable skills enable English majors to pursue careers and graduate work in a variety of fields including law, business, education, advertising, publishing, research, public relations, writing, web editing, and marketing. An English major can easily be combined with a minor in another professional discipline such as business, psychology, communications, or history. Learn more about Jobs & Internships here.

What could be better? For four years you do lots of writing and reading, you talk about writing and reading, then follow up with more writing and reading. Then, the sky’s the limit. Common jobs held by English majors include:

Median Salary: $78,011
30-Year Earnings: $4,601,086

Median Salary: $88,498
30-Year Earnings: $5,219,609

Median Salary: $79,674
30-Year Earnings: $4,699,170

Make Your Money Count, But Do What You Love

When all is said and done, the best way to get the biggest bang for your education buck is to truly love what you do. But while few things contribute to your ultimate earning power like passion and excelling at what you do, it doesn’t hurt to know you’ll be able to pay off those college loans a little sooner!

Transferable Skills Acquired in the English Degree

By the end of the senior year, English majors develop the skills to:

  • Produce coherent, clear, and well-organized writing in a variety of genres for a variety of audiences and purposes
  • Think flexibly and critically about issues and solve problems creatively, both individually and in collaboration with others
  • Manage their time effectively and work independently to complete complex projects
  • Express ethical values, examine issues from multiple perspectives, and respond with empathy to the range of human experience, both in writing and in personal interactions
  • Present material effectively in an oral format